Chimichanga

Chimichanga

With this fried chimichanga recipe, making a delicious Tex-Mex meal from scratch is wonderfully easy. Featuring a spiced bean filling, these pan-fried chimichangas have a tender texture on the inside and a delightfully crispy exterior. Serving the golden-brown tortilla packages with sour cream, jalapenos, lime wedges, and a colourful salad with purple cabbage, red tomatoes, orange carrots, and yellow corn is sure to bring a smile to the face of everyone you share them with.

Instructions

Colourful cabbage salad
  • Squeeze the cabbage with juice from one lime wedge – it should be about 1 tablespoon of lime juice.
  • Arrange cabbage salad followed by carrots, tomatoes, and corn in that order on a platter.
Chimichanga with beans
  • Heat oil in a pan and sauté onion, garlic, and jalapenos for about 2 minutes. Add cumin and salt and mix it.
  • Fold beans into the mixture and add water. Let it cook for 2 minutes. Season the filling to taste.
  • Place 1 tablespoon of shredded cheese in the middle of each tortilla. Then add 1 tablespoon of filling and finish with another tablespoon of cheese.
  • Fold the tortilla’s sides over the middle before folding the top and bottom over the middle as well – this should give you are sealed package. Turn the packages over so the seam side is down. Continue this process for each tortilla.
  • Heat oil in a sauté pan and fry the 8 chimichangas on both sides for 2-3 minutes at medium heat.
How to serve it
  • Serve the chimichangas with sour cream, pickled jalapenos, and colourful cabbage salad on the side.
Enjoy!
Tip

Traditionally, a chimichanga is not just pan-fried; it is deep-fried. So if you enjoy extra crispy treats, a deep-fried chimichanga might be the thing for you. In a thick-bottomed saucepan, heat about 2.5-5 cm of cooking oil to 182-185°C. Use a cooking thermometer to measure the oil's temperature. You may want to use toothpicks to secure the chimichangas, so they do not open as you fry them. Fry 1-2 at a time for about 2 minutes on each side until they are golden brown and have a perfectly crisp texture. Remove the deep-fried chimichangas from the oil and let them drain off excess oil on a plate lined with paper towels or on a wire rack. Serve warm!

Questions about chimichangas

Making homemade chimichangas is delightfully simple with our easy chimichanga recipe. To learn more about them, continue reading below.

What is a chimichanga?
A traditional chimichanga is a rectangular tortilla package that is pan or deep-fried to give it a crispy, golden exterior. Inside it has a filling usually made with beans, rice, meat like chicken or beef, cheese, and sometimes vegetables. The delicious fried burritos are often accompanied by sour cream, salsa, or guacamole and are sometimes garnished with fresh herbs or served with a side salad. The tasty dish comes from Tex-Mex cuisine, which takes inspiration from the Tejano people of Texas as well as Mexican cuisine.
How to make a chimichanga?
If you are in the mood for a glorious Tex-Mex meal, bean chimichangas are just the thing. To make them, prepare the filling by sautéing onions, garlic, and jalapenos in a pan. Add cumin, salt, beans, and water and cook it. On each tortilla, place 1 tablespoon of shredded cheddar cheese, 1 tablespoon of bean filling, and 1 more tablespoon of cheese. Fold them and fry them to golden perfection in a pan. Serve your homemade chimichangas with sour cream and a colourful salad with purple pointed cabbage squeezed with lime, shredded carrots, cherry tomatoes, and corn.
How to reheat chimichanga?
Leftover chimichangas that have been stored in the fridge may be reheated either in the oven or the microwave. Though the latter may be the faster option, we recommend reheating them in the oven at 175°C (regular oven) as this helps preserve the crunchy texture of the tortilla. In the microwave, you risk them becoming soggy. Heat them until the outside is crispy once more and the filling is warm. This should take 5-10 minutes.
What is the difference between a burrito and a chimichanga?
So, basically, is chimichanga a fried burrito? The answer is yes as the two dishes are made with the same kind of tortillas and fillings. Where a burrito is often lightly grilled or steamed to make the tortilla pliable and tender, a chimichanga is instead pan-fried or deep-fried to create its signature crunchy exterior. Some recipes will instruct you to bake them in the oven rather than frying them, but with a baked chimichanga we instead move into enchilada territory, though these are usually made with corn tortillas.
Do chimichangas have beans?
Beans are usually a part of a chimichanga filling. Chimichangas are often made with either black beans, pinto beans, or kidney beans with the former two being the most traditional choices. Usually, the filling has so-called refried beans in it. Even though the name makes it sound like these beans have been fried twice, their name is a reference to their Spanish name frijoles refritos meaning well-fried beans. Refried beans are made by frying lightly mashed boiled beans in oil.
What is inside a chimichanga?
A chimichanga can be full of all sorts of delicious fillings made from beans, rice, meat like beef and chicken, vegetables, as well as cheese. Inside our bean chimichangas, there is, as you would assume, a delicious bean filling. Flavoured with onion, garlic, cumin, and pickled jalapenos and mixed with shredded red cheddar, it is tender and tasty. The gooey cheese which melts as the chimichangas are fried adds a wonderful richness that ties in well with the spiced beans.

Ingredients

Colourful cabbage salad
Purple pointed cabbages
300 g
Lime fruit, cut into wedges
1
Carrots, coarsely shredded
100 g
Cherry tomatoes, cut into halves
150 g
Corn
100 g
Chimichanga with beans
Rapeseed oil
1 tsp
Onion finely chopped
1
Garlic cloves crushed
2
Pickled jalapeños
2 tbsp
Ground cumin
1 tsp
Black beans, soaked and boiled
240 g
Water
50 ml
Coarse salt
½ tsp
Red cheddar cheese
175 g
Flour tortilla bread
8
Rapeseed oil
100 ml
Serve with
Sour cream, 18%
Pickled jalapeños

Classic Tex-Mex fried chimichangas with cabbage salad

A bean and cheese chimichanga makes for an incredibly tasty dinner or lunch that you can easily serve at dinner parties. The golden, crispy exterior of the chimichangas is sure to entice any guest and once they taste the savoury, spiced bean filling, they will not be able to resist.

Served with a colourful cabbage salad with plenty of bite, the Tex-Mex meal of your dreams is complete. This salad has a complex flavour profile with sweet, tangy, and slightly bitter undertones. The lime juice used to tenderise the purple pointed cabbage gives it a zesty freshness that makes it a vibrant dish in taste as well as appearance.

Cheesy wraps dipped in cold sour cream

Our pan-fried chimichanga is filled with delicious, melted cheese. The gooey cheddar gives it a wonderful richness. For a bit of freshness, it is a great idea to serve it with sour cream. It is velvety soft and introduces a bit of tang into the dish that lightens it while it serves as a textural contrast to the chimichanga's crispy outside.

Sour cream also has a cooling effect that will mellow the spiciness of the bean filling. Serve your homemade chimichangas with as much or as little sour cream as you desire. Some other great chimichanga toppings include salsa, garlicky chimichurri, and creamy guacamole.

Spicy authentic chimichanga with bean filling

A traditional pinto, kidney, or black bean chimichanga is packed with flavour. It is a traditional filling with beans adding a rich, hearty flavour as well as a satisfying texture. A base of sautéed onion and garlic forms the foundation for the filling, and they help build layers of flavour upon the mild-tasting, slightly nutty and earthy beans.

Warming cumin, which is a perfect flavour pairing for pinto, kidney, and black beans, gives additional depth as well as a bit of citrussy brightness that lets the pickled jalapenos shine. Their vinegary spiciness is what turns up the heat and tickles your tastebuds when you bite into a crunchy tortilla package.

How to fold a chimichanga the right way

The best chimichanga recipe, of course, must include a bit of instruction on how to roll a chimichanga properly. A good tip is to heat the tortillas slightly to make them softer and more pliable. Sprinkle them with a bit of water or cover them with a damp towel before popping them in the microwave for a few seconds.

After placing the filling in the middle, roll it across sideways. Now fold in the sides. Then fold the bottom flap tightly over the filling. Keep the tortilla tight against the filling to prevent air pockets. Then finish it by folding the top flap down and giving a few presses so it keeps its shape. If you want to, you can use a toothpick to secure the fold.

If you are on the lookout for more folded delicacies with Tex-Mex influences, we suggest you check out our shredded beef tacos, chicken wraps with Mexican corn salad, and beef enchiladas too.

Experiment with different fillings

Crunchy chimichangas taste great no matter what kind of filling you decide to stuff them with. Try making some with pulled beef or shredded chicken in addition to the jalapeno-spiced beans. We promise you will not be disappointed by such an umami-rich addition.

A vegetable chimichanga with peppers, broccoli, mushrooms, carrots, and fresh chilli also tastes delicious if you are looking for an easy way to eat more vegetables. Slightly bitter ones like green peppers and green chilli pair nicely with the nutty beans.

Since an authentic chimichanga recipe will usually have rice in the filling, this is perhaps an option you might like to explore further. You can use regular white rice, brown rice, yellow rice with saffron or turmeric, or Tex-Mex or Spanish-style red rice with tomato, garlic, and onion. All are good options for these bean chimichangas.